Wednesday, December 3, 2008

I Think I Can See My Breath

Alex went away on a business trip Monday morning. The furnace apparently decided that he was the one it was heating the house for, so went on strike.

It seemed a little cold in my house on Monday, but I'm always cold, so I didn't pay much attention to it.

Tuesday afternoon I started to suspect that the thermostat wasn't doing anything. I mostly figured this out because I kept pushing the up button to no avail. I'm the kind of person who will keep pushing the button up until something happens. I eventually ended up with it set at 78 degrees. But no matter. The read-out that signified what the temperature actually was read 67 degrees. Later in the day it read 66.

All the evidence pointed toward the fact that something was drastically wrong with the furnace. Weirdly, no amount of yanking at the thermostat casing or starting intently at the furnace itself would fix it. I was still hopeful that the power of wishing it worked would fix it.

Here's how that went: Bad.

When I woke up this morning (Wednesday), the thermostat said 62 degrees. By the time I left for school, it said 61 degrees.

I dropped all the kids off at school, then came home, cried uncle, and called a random heating company. They said they'd come between 1 and 4. Then I put two big blankets on the couch, climbed under them and laid there sadly pretending to sleep until it was time to go pick up Quinn.

Seriously, I think it was warmer outside.

At 3 or so, I called the heating company. They said they'd be here at 4:30. Which, incidentally, is NOT between 1 and 4. Unfortunately, I would not be home at 4:30. So they said they'd come between 7 and 9 pm.

When Alex arrived home tonight, even he, Mr. I'm Never Cold, admitted that it was indeed sorta chilly in the house. When the heating guy arrived at 6:30 (NOT between 7 and 9 pm, I might add), we were both thrilled to see him.

Of course the guy was able to get the heater working in 16 seconds. He talked about a lot of things like drain pans and exhaust lines and filters and the need to change those occasionally. I waved a check at him from my vantage point under my blanket and demanded to be so hot that I'd sweat.

I don't know what he did, but he did accept my check, and although I'm not sweating, I'm not even under a blanket. I feel so happy and relieved to not be shivering. My computer isn't icy to the touch. Quinn's hands aren't hard and cold as little rocks.


I am still wearing a sweater though.


  1. OMFG! Two days!? Brrrrr. Glad you have heat again. Guess the repair guy wanted to wait til Alex was back, too? ;-)

  2. Glad to hear it got fixed and you are warm again. I, however, am still freezing (the window didn't get put in, just have a cheap hubby who likes to keep the thermastat low) I have a very cold nose.

  3. So, you left out the important facts, like what kind of heat is it? Gas? Oil? Forced air? These things matter. Me, I keep the thermostat in the low 60s, a habit I picked up back when oil was so expensive it cost us an arm and a leg to heat the 100 year old house.

    Plus, our heat somehow disappears, evaporates into drafty hallways and stairwells, collecting in bedrooms where it becomes too hot to breath. So, low 60s and a couple of good space heaters seem to be the ticket this year. So far, the plan is working well.

  4. I hate when stuff like that happens. I'm so bad with mechanical stuff, I just panic.

  5. I am so not good with cold. I seriously would have gone to a hotel. Or bought 10 space heaters. We have oil heat which has been very expensive these last few years, and I am cold all the damn time. I can't wait for mosquito season!

  6. I actually prefer to be cold, so our thermostats are set for 65 during the day and 55 at night, but I am petrified of the furnace breaking. It's one thing for ME to be cold, and another thing for the kids and pets. No, no.

    Incidentally, Josie's radiator stopped working a couple of weeks ago, and the repair guy totally stood us up the first time, and the second time came FIVE HOURS late. I was still thrilled to see him, because the space heater we were using in her room blew a circuit every time we had on more than one additional thing in her room, so she could only have it and the radio, or it and the humidifier, as long as both were on their lowest settings. Argh. He, too, fixed it in ten minutes. Blah, blah, air pockets, uh-huh, here's your check, buh-bye!

  7. Burrrr - though it coud be worse - you could be in Toronto where the temp in the hosue would have been about, oh, 2 degrees withing hours!

  8. Glad you have heat.

    Don't come visit me. We keep the thermostat at 64 during the morning/evening rush, and 55 the rest of the time (like at night, and during the day when there's no one home).

  9. Okay but on a practical note,if he was able to get it going again that fast, might it be something you could possibly do yourself if it happens again??
    I guess I'm speaking from the perspective of a single woman used to having to learn how to do some of that stuff. Not fun maybe, but it can be valuable information to find out what was wrong for next time.

  10. How do people like Magpie do it? I'm from Florida, so maybe that's what makes it sound so crazy to me.

  11. What a drag. Thank goodness it was an easy (eventual) fix.

    We once went two days without heat during a major cold snap (temps in the teens) because a part needed to be ordered. We had a cheesy little space heater that we moved from room to room, but it still sucked. Once the heat was back, it took our granite counter over a full day to warm up -- it retained the cold and felt like an iceberg!

  12. My mom's house has old radiators, and our heat goes out all the time! But my dad keeps it on 68 anyway, even when the heat IS working. 65 during the day. Sometimes when the heat goes out, I don't even notice it for days, because I'm so used to being C-C-C-Cold!
    Glad you're much warmer now though!

  13. Oh, things like that happen sometimes and it frustrates me. It's just hard coz I also can't tolerate the cold. I'm glad that its now working!


Thanks for commenting! May you be visited by unicorns and kittens.